4
Aug
2005

PHONE MAST GETS GO AHEAD ON APPEAL

The Cornishman Cornwall

09:30 - 04 August 2005

An appeal against the refusal of planning permission for a 15-metre high telecommunications mast at Carbis Bay has been upheld. Hutchinson 3G UK Ltd went to appeal after Penwith Council refused permission for the structure - incorporating three antennae, four dishes and associated equipment - at Carninney Farm in January.

Planning inspector John Woolcock has agreed that the development can go ahead, subject to a number of conditions.

In explaining how he reached his conclusion, Mr Woolcock said he considered the main issue to be the effect of the proposal on the character and appearance of the area.

"I have also considered the effects of the proposal on the health and amenity of local residents, and whether there are any available alternative sites which could provide similar coverage and have less environmental impact," he commented.

Mr Woolcock conceded that the scheme would have an adverse effect on the character of the area.

But he concluded: "I am satisfied that the proposal would, as far as technically feasible, utilise a location which minimises its impact on the character and amenity of the wider landscape, residential amenity and the setting of the settlement."

He added that there did not appear to be any available alternative sites that would provide similar coverage and have less environmental impact.

"In my judgement, the need for the mast in this case is sufficient to outweigh the conflict with the development plan and the limited harm to the character and appearance of the area."

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So, in this Inspector's judgement "the need for the mast in this case is sufficient to outweigh the conflict with the development plan and the limited harm to the character and appearance of the area". A couple of points:

- There is no statutory requirement for the mast; 'the need' is merely a commercial need and a means of "3" making money. The balance between HMG's policy of encouraging mobile phone use and the rights of local communities to have a say in what goes on in their neighbourhood has clearly gone badly astray. Oh that we had the wherewithal to challenge this in court!

- "..and the limited harm to the character and appearance of the area". This is a purely subjective judgement made by a stranger to the area. It is merely one opinion of one (hardly qualified) individual which, again, should be open to challenge.

David B

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..........But, David, on the positive side, he did say that he CONSIDERED HEALTH and AMENITY, so neither are quite extinct yet! We just have to keep blowing on the flames till we resurrect the phoenix from the fire!

Sandi

--------

He had to, Sandi. Not to have done so would have been unlawful and invited a High Court challenge.

David
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